Romelu Lukaku has been slammed and told to apologise to Chelsea’s fans after making ‘disrespectful’ comments about the club and a future return to Inter Milan.
In an interview recorded several weeks ago but aired on Thursday, Lukaku admitted he was ‘not happy’ with his role under Thomas Tuchel and wanted to go back to Inter in the near future.
Lukaku has scored seven goals in 18 appearances for the Blues since re-joining Chelsea last summer in a £97.5m move from Italian club Inter Milan.
‘I’m not happy with the situation, this is normal,’ Lukaku told Sky Sport Italia. ‘But I am a worker and I must not give up.
‘I want to say a big apology to the Inter fans because I think the way I left should have been different.
‘I really hope in the depths of my heart to return to Inter, not at the end of my career, but at a still good level to hopefully win more.’
But Lukaku has been accused of ‘disrespecting’ his current club by former England stars Trevor Sinclair and Darren Bent.
Sinclair told talkSPORT: ‘I’m in absolute shock. I was at Chelsea’s win against Villa and I watched him in the warm up.
‘I was intrigued because he was out for a while and wondered what his mood was going to be like – he was smiling, laughing, he looked like he was loving being back in the Chelsea squad.
‘The second-half performance cemented what I was thinking. He looked happy, he played happy, got a goal, an elite striker’s goal and then the third goal where he won the penalty I thought was one of the best runs to earn a penalty from him I’ve seen in a long time.
‘For him to come out with those comments, I think he should be apologising to the Chelsea fans. That’s so disrespectful to the Chelsea fans.
‘I think that’s so disrespectful to the Chelsea manager. I’d be astounded if he hadn’t had a conversation with Thomas Tuchel about this.
‘He might not have got the answer he wanted but you don’t come out in public and say this. I think it’s disrespectful to his teammates and I think it’s disrespectful to the owner.
‘He’s 28 years old. A lot of Chelsea’s front line will look up to Lukaku, I think he’s let them all down.’
Lukaku’s return to Stamford Bridge has been hampered by injury and illness, but he has scored in his last two Premier League appearances.
Ex-England striker Bent added: ‘Some of the quotes are just crazy.
‘One of the quotes where he says he hopes to return to Inter Milan and not at the end of his career, while he’s at his peak still. That could be soon! He’s not getting any younger.
‘It is a bombshell. I can understand his frustrations at not playing because there have been times where he’s been available and Thomas Tuchel has opted to go for Christian Pulisic as a false nine or Kai Havertz.
‘But to be so public about it, that’s a hammer blow for Chelsea Football Club.’